Virtual healthcare has become extremely important to the day to day operations of many hospitals and healthcare providers. While the popular belief is that the quality of a virtual visit isn’t as good as an in-person visit, a lot of people are actually satisfied and find virtual healthcare more convenient and personal than in-person doctor visits. Several studies have even found that virtual visits are more convenient and efficient for both doctors and patients alike.
The quality of virtual healthcare compared to in-person visits
- According to McKinsey, virtual health has the potential to heavily disrupt the multi-trillion dollar healthcare industry.
- While virtual healthcare has not seen the uptick in popularity that experts predicted, the practice of virtual doctor visits is quite popular with people that have used those services.
- According to a 2019 article on the patients experience with telehealth, the majority of patients (62.9%) and 59.0% of clinicians reported that there was no difference in “the overall quality of the visit” compared to in-person visits.
- However, the vast majority of patients and medical practitioners found virtual visits both more convenient and efficient.
- A Massachusetts General Hospital study has reported that patients were able to create stronger personal connections with their medical providers during the telehealth visits.
- The report has also found that patients tend to be more relaxed and candid during their telemedicine visit because they do not have to miss work or wait for a long time to meet with their medical practitioner.
- Another McKinsey survey has reported that 74% of telehealth users were very satisfied with the virtual medical services offered to them.
- Several doctors have also reported that virtual healthcare has given them greater continuity and deeper relationships with their patients.
- A survey of ACP members has shown that as much as 51% of their medical practitioners use telehealth services as part of their practices, with 63% using the technology every week.
- On the other hand, traditional personal visits are neither pleasant nor very helpful according to a study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.
- Over 64% of primary care providers and 80% of specialists either didn’t ask the patient why they came or gave them 11 seconds before interrupting them.
- The study showed that, in most cases, in-person visits feature “appalling bedside manners and poor communication.”
- A big part of that is the sense of urgency installed by the hospital system.
- A study by the Annals of Internal Medicine found that only a third of the physician‘s time in the office is spent on face-to-face patient visits, while more than half of their time is spent on EHR and desk work.